Mid-Century Mississippi: Hutto’s Home and Garden Center

Y’all know that I’m a sucker for folded-plate roofs, so you may not be surprised that I found my favorite lawn and garden center, Hutto’s on Ellis Avenue in Jackson, when I was out taking pictures of interesting buildings on the Highway 80 corridor and spotted its folded plate porte cochere.

This was on a Sunday, when they’re closed, but I ventured back on a Saturday, and for several years now I’ve been hooked on their specially blended Hutto’s fertilizers, which have brought back a magnolia in my front yard from certain demise to a thriving, blooming neighborhood wonder (at least in my eyes, if not the rest of the neighborhood’s) and I’m certain will revive three old pecan trees with just one more year of fertilizer. I also enjoy wandering through their large selection of fruit trees and imagining that I might have a big orchard someday where I can just walk through in the cool of the evening and pluck a fig or an apple or a pear or a plum. Hey, you gotta have aspirations, right?

Anyway, back to Hutto’s.

I searched and searched for Hutto’s in newspapers.com, but couldn’t find when it opened until I then searched by its original address, 1306 Ellis Avenue (now it’s 1320 Ellis), and bingo! Turns out the building, which opened in 1968, was originally known as Hinds Nursery and Garden Shop. I’m not sure when it became Hutto’s, but its seems within the next decade.

The lawn and garden center was a post-war suburban business innovation similar to the home improvement center, highlighted in Thomas Rosell’s Hill-Behan: A New Concept in Building Materials Merchandising post. New homeowners wanted to make their new stripped-bare yards look lived in, they had the weekends to work out in the yard, some money to spend on plants but not enough to pay a landscaper or gardener, neighborhoods encouraged nice landscaping with “Yard of the Month” signs, and the rest is business history.

According to the multi-page grand opening spread in the Clarion-Ledger, Hutto’s/Hinds Nursery was designed by Godfrey, Bassett and Pitts of Jackson and built by Minks Construction Company. If you’re in or around Jackson and miss having a real garden center with people who know what they’re talking about AND if you love folded-plate roofs, the you deserve a trip to Hutto’s.

New Garden Shop Opens

Farm Supply Store Also At Ellis Avenue Site

The general public is invited to view the modern facilities of the Hinds Nursery & Garden Shop, Inc, when the doors of its newly constructed building, located at 1306 Ellis Avenue, are formally opened April 22, from 8 a.m. to 5:30 p.m.

Refreshments will be served, and door prizes will be given. All persons will be asked to register for the prizes which include tire, batteries, feed, seed, insecticide, and basic slag.

The new building, which marks a decade of progressive business growth, became necessary to provide required storage space and a better location. The new site makes it easily accessible for customers from all sections of Mississippi without having to travel through heavily congested traffic areas.

In addition to fertilizer, feed, seed, roofing, fence wire, hardware, automobile tires, etc., the firm is able to handle a complete line of garden supplies.

Hinds Nursery and Garden Shop, Inc., began September 26, 1962 and was formerly a branch of Hinds County Cooperative which was organized at Raymond in 1948. At that time A. R. Smith was appointed manager and under his capable leadership, together with the backing of the board of directors, the company has grown and expanded to necessitate the present changes.

The new facility has 40,800 sq. ft. There is a small conference room which will be available to garden clubs for their programs.

L.C. Hand, having served as manager of the Jackson store since 1955, was named assistant general manager in 1967. W.H. Basye serves as manager of the farm supply and M.F. (Bud) Hickson as manager of the nursery.

Clarion-Ledger/Jackson Daily News, April 21, 1968, p. G-4

 


Can’t get enough Mid-Century Mississippi?



Categories: Architectural Research, Cool Old Places, Jackson, Recent Past, Roadside

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6 replies

  1. And not only folded-plate, but geometric domes and space frame barrel vaults–what is not to love?

    Like

  2. can’t get “read more ” line to open ?? Bz

    Like

  3. So it’s still there? I’m glad. I remember it dimly as being Hinds before it was Hutto’s but by either name it was a fine garden center that we visited frequently. Has to have been 20 years at least since I’ve been there.

    Like

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